With casinos open and online gambling available, 500+ people reached out for help in Michigan.

In February of this year, the Michigan Problem Gambling Helpline received 563 calls from those seeking help. That number is five times the amount of calls received in February of 2020.

I'm pretty sure it is safe to say that the ability for people to gamble online in Michigan accounts for the increase in calls. It is easier than ever to play slots, table games, and bet on sports in Michigan. However, that does pose a problem to those with an addiction to gambling.

Casinos are at limited capacity right now because of the pandemic,”  "The only thing that could really (explain) this is the growth of online gambling. Because that’s really the only big change that’s happened in Michigan...said Michelle Malkin, a doctoral candidate at Michigan State University.

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If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, call the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Problem Gambling Helpline at 1-800-270-7117 for confidential help. The helpline has a number of ways for those with a gambling addiction to get help including counselors, treatment options, and even how to spot a problem and maybe even prevent it.

Now that it is legal to gamble online in Michigan, there will also be an increase in the support of addiction resources. Around $1 million will be received annually by the Compulsive Gaming Prevention Fund.

As someone who plays slots in online casinos on a regular basis, I can totally understand how someone with an addiction could get sucked into it. Thankfully, it looks like quite a few people so far have reached out for help.

Source: WNEM

Here are some tips for self-care during the pandemic: